Roads and rural life
Maine is a rural state, and we are ignoring some basic needs of Maine people when we allow roads and bridges to deteriorate throughout Maine by not spending enough money on infrastructure.
Businesses, towns and every resident in this state depend on a good road system to ship products, commute to work and carry families safely.
There have been a lot of new programs over the past several years, but maybe we should stick to basics since many of them don’t affect residents’ daily lives the way transportation investment does.
Question 3 on the June 8 ballot is the transportation bond, and it will make our roads safer and thereby improve the quality of life for our residents.
Senators earn thanks
Sens. Snowe and Collins deserve a round of applause.
They resisted pressure from their Wall Street party leadership to torpedo reform and instead voted to put the brakes on the big bank-Wall Street casino that has continued to threaten our economy.
Just as the economy was recovering, the parasites who brought the financial system to a standstill two years ago were picking up where they left off with huge bonuses built on deceptive trading and loan practices.
The president and most of Congress finally did the right thing in working to pass needed rules and curbs.
Maine’s community banks and credit unions were not part of the financial meltdown, but they borrow from the big boys. The hedge funds, derivative traders, and mortgage lenders who have operated beyond the reach of the law will now be accountable. There actually will be an agency looking out for consumers for a change.
Is it perfect legislation? No, it doesn’t bring back Glass-Steagall to keep insurance and banks from playing a little loose, but at least there will be a cop on the beat. Mainers knew reform was needed. The latest poll showed 78 percent of Maine voters supported a comprehensive financial reform plan, and 92 percent favored protecting consumers from harmful business practices, and 85 percent favored establishing an early warning system and increasing transparency in financial markets.
Maine’s senators did the right thing, and for that have earned some thanks.
Wind’s promise hollow
The town of Clifton is holding a series of informational meetings regarding wind turbine generators on Thursday nights leading up to the June 8 vote on a new land-use ordinance and a June 17 vote on a moratorium for accepting wind farm permits.
Evidence from areas near wind turbine sites points to disturbing noises, spoiled scenic views and lower resale values for homes.
Evidence shows there will be a brief reduction in taxes because of revenue from turbine owners, then increased school district contributions, increased county taxes and reduced state revenue-sharing will actually increase taxes to a level higher than they would have been without the turbines.
Residents of Montville, Thorndike, Jackson and Dixmont — neighbors of Freedom, where wind turbines have been operating for two years — have passed ordinances so restrictive that there will be no industrial wind generation in these towns. Our neighbors in Dedham have done the same.
We support alternative energy production, but these facilities should not be located near populated areas. We, like everyone else, would like our tax burden decreased.
Suggestions by wind turbine facility developers of lower taxes and low impact on residents are shaded to allow residents to believe that good things will come from these developments. The good things that come from wind farms come only to the owners of these facilities.
Thomas and Phyllis Wolf
Abbott for Maine
I am supporting Steve Abbott for governor, because he understands that Maine once was great. That Maine was a place where he and his family and friends could find opportunity, start families and make a living.
Steve understands that young Maine residents are having a difficult time finding jobs and many have been forced to leave. It is time for Maine government to help, not obstruct, our businesses so there will be more job growth for young families.
We have to work together to make Maine government a partner to Maine businesses. To do that, we need a leader — and I strongly believe Steve is that leader.
On June 8, please vote for Steve Abbott. He can win this primary election and go on to win in November.
Governor race, LNG
To all those running for governor of Maine: My vote is lost to you if you support LNG in Passamaquoddy Bay. I hope all Mainers are very cautious, because these large LNG corporations will be much like BP in the Gulf of Mexico. They are for-profit at our and nature’s expense.
If southern New England needs the gas, then let them have more LNG terminals in their ports. I’d like to see that allowed by the people there. It never will happen. We do not need a Goldman Sachs LNG destroying Down East. Corporate gas greed prevails, thanks to our senators’ and governor’s support.
Kudos for McGowan
On June 8, I will be supporting Patrick McGowan in the Democratic primary and encourage all voters to do the same.
Pat understands Maine’s potential as an energy leader and has a proven track record in fostering economic development and job growth in our state.
As a member of the Finance Authority of Maine board, McGowan was instrumental in the reopening of the Old Town mill, now known as Old Town Fuel & Fiber. Along with 200 of my friends and neighbors, I am back to work at this facility and looking at a prosperous future as we convert wood into clean energy. McGowan has the plan and the knowledge to enhance Maine’s pulp an paper industry, adding value to our raw goods and positioning Maine as a leader in the green economy.
As a loyal pulp and paper worker, I urge all workers in the pulp and paper industry to support Patrick McGowan on June 8.
The Bangor Daily News will stop accepting letters and columns related to the June 8 election on Wednesday, June 2. We will stop printing such commentary with the June 5-6 edition. Not all submissions can be published.